Gambia: Police Turn Down 3 Years Jotna Permit Request

16 January 2020

The Office of the Inspector General of Police has decided not to grant a permit to anti-government protesters - 3 Years Jotna, a pressure group that plans to protest on 20 January 2020.

Police say that the denial of permit to the group was due to compelling national security and public safety concerns.

The pressure group is calling on President Adama Barrow to step down after three years per the coalition agreement and also a campaign promise he made to the country.

The 3 Years Jotna was, however, granted permit last month in which they marched through the outskirts of Jeswang to the Denton Bridge where they handed a petition to Mr. Barrow asking him to honour his campaign promise. The petition was handed to the president through the government spokesperson Ebrima G. Sankara, demanding the president steps down by 19 January 2020, exactly three years after he took the oaths of Office of President.

The anti government protesters vowed that with or without permit, it's their constitutional right to take to the streets next week to defend what they described as agreement to The Gambian people.

The Office of the Inspector General of Police acting in accordance with Section 178 of the 1997 Constitution of the Republic of The Gambia, vows to continue to deliver on its mandate of protecting life and properties as well as maintaining law and order.

Meanwhile, the spokesperson of 3 Years Jotna, Haji Sawaneh, in an interview with The Point, said the police decided to withhold the permit due to some security reasons.

"On our side, we think the police denying us the permit is a violation of our rights. We will continue calling on the police and advise them not to violate our rights and let them issue us a permit," he said.

"We are working on other issues on the denial of the permit. But as far as I am concern, as the spokesperson of 3 Years Jotna, it will be premature for me to disclose our plans as of now. But we are working very tirelessly on the issue of the permit and the denial of the permit."

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